An (Over)loaded Question: What if…?

posted by on 29th September 2014, at 6:35pm

Like most of you, I’ve been wandering around our new crystal city in awe of it’s beauty and OP training methods. With all the free time between mining Seren rocks and pickpocketing the various clan elves I’ve had some time to think. My mind filled one night with how to make skills more profitable. Quite a few “what if…” scenarios passed through my head. Then, one with actual merit went from my subconscious and freight trained its way to my primary focus. It was like a Doc Brown light bulb moment where he whips around to Marty. Great Scott – Overloads! No, not that my mind was overloaded (which could have been Doc’s problem in those movies, but I digress), the potion – Overloads! Herblore is widely considered a money sink, especially at higher levels, but when you really think about it the skill is actually a resource sink. The entire extreme line of potions are untradeable, and a large majority of master botanists in the game have stacks of extra potions that have a slew of herbs and secondaries locked away in an unsellable form. At the moment, Herblore is kind of nice as it is because it makes it worth training. There’s no other way to boost your levels unless you get off your bunsen burner and get mixing. But as the Rune Goldberg update has tried to do for runes, we too need something to flush these unused resources out of banks that will both help the skiller while creating a precious tradable resource. There’s really only one solution as the skill stands – make overloads tradable

“Woah there, Rickles. Pump your brakes. You’re suggesting we make the reward for training Herblore and sinking so much cash into resources so anyone can get it? That totally defeats the purpose!”

I hear ya. Allow me to explain.  It doesn’t defeat the purpose. It allows you to transform your hard work and turn it into something highly sought and valuable that other players would pay top dollar for. All the way through level 85+ we are stockpiling extreme potions. We then make something by combining all of these together. While it is very expensive and time consuming process, those who are unable or too lazy to do all the work themselves will pay a great price for the chance to use these. It’s a model that has been proven to work already. I have mentioned in previous articles that I love how the Ascension dungeon operates. You take keystones that alone are valuable, turn them into signets that have no value, and then, and only then, when you have all of those pieces you combine them all to make an Ascension crossbow, something that is extremely valuable. Overloads work the same way – take your resources, create potions that are untradeable, but then combine them all in order to create a potion that is amazing and could be very valuable. It’s a proven principle that would work the same way only for a skill.

“But overloads are supposed to be a reward!”

I know, and they still will be. After all, you get to be able to make them and not have to buy them and in turn you get to sell them. A high level way to make money in a skill is exactly the kind of reward that makes people want to train something. It will also push those who can’t make them yet to train Herblore if only to unlock the resources and make some money back. I can’t imagine making overloads tradable will devalue the reward or make people not want to train Herblore, in fact I’d say it would do the opposite. Plus, due to the costs of the resources to make them it will keep prices high while correcting prices for the herbs, particularly torstols, which aren’t near the price when overloads first were released.

We’re already talking money, so let’s talk prices. Runewiki has broken down the prices of all the resources to make overloads to be 76k. While you can surely farm all the herbs and secondaries (boosting the value of two skills at the same time) you would increase your profit quite nicely. That would make overloads somewhere around 80K for 3 doses. While it seems expensive, for such a massive boost for 15 minutes would be worth it to someone who can’t make extremes. Can’t beat Nomad? Want to shorten kills in GWD? Want to save spaces of all the other potions you’d need down to just one slot? How much is it worth to you? How much is it worth to someone who can’t make potions and just PvMs? Think about if they made these usable in PvP again. Is such a mighty boost worth the cost to a PKer? I would say absolutely. For a pricetag of 250k for an hour’s worth of wrecking it would be worth it. Consider the other areas of the game that would benefit as well. Herb prices, demand for secondary items (like Grenwall spikes, potato cacti, and Zammy wine), prices and use of Sara brews – all would skyrocket. And all those torstol drops would finally be put to good use and PvMers could sell them back to the potion makers. Aw, the circle of life – it moves us all.

So would it be a great idea? I think so. Of course, there’s no telling how many overloads are out there not being used and how much demand there really would be. Would the price really be reliable with so many ingredients being able to be fluctuated in the market? It may be too late to initiate such a change, but I do still believe it could be beneficial and really the only way to make Herblore profitable. What do you guys think? Sound off and let me know your thoughts!

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